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Legal Analyst Proclaims DA Willis’ Trump Prosecution Now ‘Tainted’

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


Another legal analyst has spoken out against Fani Willis as the embattled Fulton County district attorney faces more scrutiny over her behavior regarding her case against former President Donald Trump.

On Friday, legal analyst and attorney Harry Litman suggested that Willis’ prosecution of Trump is still “tainted,” even though the special prosecutor she hired, Nathan Wade, has since resigned his position and left the case.

Willis has been spearheading the investigation that resulted in a criminal indictment against Trump for his purported attempts to overturn the outcome of the 2020 election in the state. Trump, along with numerous other co-defendants, faces charges of racketeering in the case, to which he pleaded not guilty during his arraignment hearing.

Willis and her office have faced controversy over allegations made by the legal team of co-defendant Mike Roman. They assert that Willis had an improper romantic relationship with Wade, an outside lawyer who the district attorney hired to help with the Trump investigation. Roman, who has also pleaded not guilty to all charges in the case, is at the center of these allegations, Newsweek noted.

Willis vehemently denied that her relationship with Wade influenced the merits of the case against Trump. However, following a hearing on the matter, Judge Scott McAfee ordered that to address the situation, either Willis or Wade would have to step down. Wade left the case on Friday shortly after the ruling was issued.

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Writing in a Friday column for the L.A. Times, Litman, who has served as a U.S. attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania and deputy assistant attorney general at the Department of Justice (DOJ), noted that “it would be a mistake to assume that Wade’s withdrawal puts an end to the ugliness and doubt surrounding Willis’ handling of the case” and that “prosecution revolving around an infamous Trump sound bite…is now tainted by an ‘odor of mendacity.'”

“But the order, and the circus-like atmosphere of the multiday evidentiary hearing that preceded it, in some ways served only to intensify the controversy surrounding the case and ensure that the rhetorical challenges will continue,” he wrote. “Notwithstanding the decorous and professional language of McAfee’s order, it lands several haymakers on Willis’ judgment and probity. Probably the most notorious and enduring is his assertion that ‘an odor of mendacity remain’ around the testimony of Willis and Wade, specifically as to the timing of their relationship. It’s a phrase that could have a continuing political impact in Georgia and nationally.”

He went on to say that the ruling by McAfee will serve as political ammunition for Trump and other Republicans after they lost the state to Joe Biden by a razor-thin margin in 2020.

Meanwhile, the judge suggested on Friday that Willis could face some additional disciplinary action.

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Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee warned Willis could face a gag order that would prevent her from discussing the case in public, as reported by The Epoch Times.

“The time may well have arrived for an order preventing the State from mentioning the case in any public forum to prevent prejudicial publicity, but that is not the motion presently before the Court,” the judge wrote in his order, referencing a racially charged speech Willis made to a black church which McAfee described as “legally improper.”

The outlet added:

Her speech came just days after allegations surfaced that she engaged in an improper relationship with special counsel Nathan Wade, whom she appointed to head the Trump election interference case in Georgia.

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During the speech, Ms. Willis invoked the “race card” without citing evidence of racial animus and criticized a Fulton County Commissioner “and so many others” for criticizing her decision to hire Mr. Wade.

“The Court cannot find that this speech crossed the line to the point where the Defendants have been denied the opportunity for a fundamentally fair trial, or that it requires the District Attorney’s disqualification,” he stated.

“But it was still legally improper. Providing this type of public comment creates dangerous waters for the District Attorney to wade further into,” the judge wrote.

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